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NEXT ROVING RACE: MADAGASCAR 2014

RacingThePlanet: Iceland 2013 Blogs

Not long now!
17-Jul-2013 10:48:34 AM [(GMT+12:00) Auckland, Wellington]

18 days to go… So little time! Eek.

I’ve been back in New Zealand for a bit over a month now and have been getting reacquainted with hills. This has involved walking around Titirangi in West Auckland, where I’m currently staying, and walking to the CBD, Newmarket, and to Birkenhead via the Auckland – Devonport ferry. A couple of friends of mine here are keen on hiking so we’ve had fun planning fun walks around the Waitakere Ranges… The weekend before last we had an entertaining 6 or so hours going straight up a hill, admiring the west coast views, then sliding down a rather muddy track before going to admire a waterfall and repeating it all again on a second track… That was an approximately 17km effort, half of which was impressive mud, and I think the only flat part was the carpark (oh, and the beach, but that was sand so...)… Most of the mud I managed to avoid, until the last hour or so of it. I have to say I’m really hoping there isn’t that much mud in Iceland (and expect there won’t be… Surely.)
Incidentally, I'm happy with the way my gaiters (inov-8 debris gaiters) worked on that walk, but there is still some very, very fine black sand from Karekare in my (old! Thankfully) shoes that is didn't bother me in the slightest me on a 33km walk across Auckland, but did manage to annoy me on a shorter walk today. Oops. That stuff gets everywhere...

From what it sounds like in Iceland at the moment, temperatures in Auckland are a similar, if a little warmer, than Reykjavik, at least. Another reason I’m glad I’m back in New Zealand as hopefully that will give me less of a shock temperature and weather wise.

The last few long walks (including the mud and views-filled walk) have provided a good opportunity to finalise most of my food and test out some of the hydration plan. It’s a bit of a change having to consider a week’s worth of food/drink rather than one day. I think my favourite discovery so far are the Em’s Power Cookies, which are WAY too edible (or at least one was after about 2 hours hiking up hill in the Waitaks), and are definitely coming to Iceland with me. I’ve tested out GU Brew tablets as well, and they seem to work pretty well, so that’s all good. I also recently had my first freeze-dried meal experience and am stoked with how good the Back Country Cuisine lamb fettuccine tasted. Going to try another flavour or two to add some variety, then just go on a shopping spree to get the quantities of food I need and figure out how on earth I’m going to fit everything in my pack!

13 more days until I leave New Zealand (30th) for Amsterdam (31st), spend a night there, and then go to Iceland on the 1st!
KRISTINA ARTHUR
RacingThePlanet: Iceland 2013

Hometown
Auckland, New Zealand

Profession
PhD student/Marine micropaleontologist

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KRISTINA ARTHUR
RacingThePlanet: Iceland 2013 competitor

Bio

I am currently working on a PhD in marine micropaleontology at VU University Amsterdam. I study microfossils to reconstruct past ocean environments. I have had a go at a shorter adventure race/orienteering events and runs, but this will be my first attempt at an event of this length/magnitude.

Hometown
Auckland, New Zealand

Profession
PhD student/Marine micropaleontologist

Why are you competing?
To challenge myself and raise money for Forest and
Bird.

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